China, Hong Kong dominate Bordeaux import - Printable Version

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- CalgaryLiquorDelivery - 09-27-2011 12:35 PM

Bordeaux, last week, confirmed China and Hong Kong to be the largest importer of Bordeaux wine, accounting for nearly 60% of the region’s total export market.

"China has overtaken Germany to become the world’s largest importer of Bordeaux wine, with its imports increasing over 85% to 314,000 hectolitres." - says Decanter.

By value, Hong Kong tops at €326m, followed by the United Kingdom at €274m. China is third, at €231m.

- andrawes76 - 09-28-2011 11:33 AM

Not surprising! You gotta hand it to the Bordeaux folks. They sniffed out the emerging market and attacked it before Napa woke up!

- CalgaryLiquorDelivery - 09-30-2011 09:14 AM

Yes, my friend! They have a remarkable nose for potential markets. Napa, with all their heritage and legacy, lagged a bit behind.

- Kcwhippet - 09-30-2011 12:31 PM

Guys, there are a few things about doing business in those countries that have kept a lot of the "Napa" wineries out of that market. Here in the US, distributors/wholesalers buy the products from the wineries and then sell them to retail outlets, who in turn sell them to their customers. In the China/Hong Kong market, the wineries still sell their product to wholesalers, but there the similarity ends because the retail outlets then generally take the wines on consignment. So, the wholesalers don't get paid until the wines are sold. If the wines sit on the shelves for months, the wholesalers are out their money for that entire period. Would you want to have your money tied up for an extended period with no income to show for your efforts? Another thing is the counterfeiting going on over there. The Penfold's situation comes to mind here. At a trade show in China, there was an exhibit for Benfold's wines, and all the product and literature looked strikingly similar to Penfold's except it's all labelled Bennfold's - with a B. And it goes on - and on.

- andrawes76 - 10-01-2011 04:39 PM

KC, that's super interesting, and I agree that the Chinese, while savvy, are also shameless about efforts to replicate business models pushing the ultra limits of copyright infringement. Kind of reminds me of the movie "Coming to America" with Eddie Murphy -> McDowells Golden Humps instead of McDonalds Golden Arches

- TheEngineer - 10-02-2011 01:25 AM

Trust me, tough to do business in wine in HK and China. Unless you are a Brand Name "i.e. the top 15 bordeaux...." the others all need lots of help. Marketing budgets have to be super high to sell wine. need lots of attention and plenty of money to go do tastings, etc, to almost hand sell the bottles. All these conspire against the prototypical top flight napa winery model of small sub 1000 case output, small winery, sell to US customers directly mostly, etc,. Bordeaux which is super premium, hada mega marketing dollars and produces in the 20,000 case area and can partner with large domestic firms definitely have the hands up. In the US, unless, you are Harlan, Screaming Eagle, and ...err...I'm not sure what else, it is a hand bottle sale. Araujo?, Scarecrow?, Dominus, Caymus SS, Shafer HSS?,... Never heard of them, why is it so bloody expensive and it is not French, ...don't want to try them. Imagine trying to sell things a few tiers down.........only US firms that have success are from the large constellation style companies that have direct access to the supermarkets.......

- andrawes76 - 10-02-2011 07:00 PM

Yeah, but just like anything else, unless you have something distinctly unique about your wine, its going to be a tough sell anywhere unless its under $20/bottle. Premier Cru, Classe A, are easier to sell here as well.